Ravens Agree to Terms with Lewis, Birk


The Baltimore Ravens reached agreements in principle with two Pro Bowl players Wednesday afternoon.

LB Ray Lewis will remain a Raven.

"We have agreed in principle on a multi-year contract that will allow Ray to finish his career as a Baltimore Raven," general manager/executive vice president Ozzie Newsome announced.

"From beginning to end as a Raven... Wow! To be with the same team with the same fans for an entire career, that doesn't happen in the NFL," Lewis said. "The bottom line for me is that God always finishes first, and I prayed over this. Over the last six days, I took a backseat and waited to see what would happen. This is part of God's plan, and I couldn't be happier. For me to be here in an area that has become so important to me and my family, that's special, very special.

"I don't think an athlete can have a greater legacy than to be able to stay in one place for an entire career. I feel so fortunate that the Ravens did what they had to do to make this happen. Thank you. My heart is with the Ravens. My heart is with Baltimore and the great fans. What can I say? Here we go!"

(Note: Lewis' contract will not be official until he signs, which will take place sometime in the next two weeks. At that time, the Ravens will hold a press conference with Lewis. Please understand that travel schedules for owner Steve Bisciotti, Newsome, head coach John Harbaugh and Lewis are causing this delay.)

Also agreeing to a contract this afternoon is six-time Pro Bowl C Matt Birk. Birk, who has played all 11 of his NFL seasons with Minnesota, will meet with the media Thursday morning (3/5) at the Ravens' Owings Mills training facility at 11 a.m.

"What a great day for the Ravens," Harbaugh stated. "To get the commitment from Ray means so much to the team, to the franchise and to our fans."

Continued Harbaugh: "To add a player like Matt, who will also give us outstanding leadership, makes us a better team. We're not standing pat. We're moving forward and getting better."